Friday, September 25, 2015

3 villagers killed in fighting in Kachin state's Mansi township

Burmese soldiers
Three villagers were killed by fighting in Mai Hkawng village, in eastern Kachin state's Mansi township, on the afternoon of Wednesday September 23rd at 5:30 PM, the Kachin News Group has learned.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

NDAK chief bars NLD from campaigning in his fiefdom in Kachin state

Long time New Democratic Army-Kachin leader (NDAK) Zahkung Ting Ying (also spelled Za Khun Ting Ring) has barred candidates from Aung San Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) from campaigning in territory he has long ruled over in north eastern Kachin state.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Heavy fighting between KIO and army reported in Mansi township

KIA soildiers take position at a frontline near its Laiza headquarters in Kachin State,Norther Burma

The Kachin News Group has learned that heavy fighting between Burma army troops and those loyal to the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) broke out Monday morning in Mansi township in eastern Kachin state. The clashes took place in Laika Zup Ja village, two miles away from Mai Hkawng village.

Monday, September 21, 2015

IMF calls Central Bank of Myanmar's capacity “weak”

Buying and selling of Hpakant jade from Burma's northern kachin state es often done by Chinese Yuan rather than Burmese kyat

In a country update released on Friday the International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned that the Central Bank of Myanmar's (CBM) “regulatory and supervisory capacity is still relatively weak”. The Washington based organization did however praise what it described as the “ongoing liberalization of the financial sector” which includes the recent Burmese government's decision to allow 9 foreign owned banks to operate inside the country.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

UK mining firm withdraws permit for jade area in Kachin state

 Aurasian Minerals Plc (AuM) a British mining firm that last year had applied for a mineral exploration permit in a jade mining area in Burma announced earlier this month that it had withdrawn the exploration permit citing a delay in a new national mining law. In an article published by the Irrawaddy magazine on Friday September 18th the firm acknowledged that its permit applications were for Kachin state, something previously unacknowledged by the company.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

KIO's N'ban La meets Thein Sein as clashes continue

KIO's N'ban La meets Thein Sein as clashes continue

During a visit to the Burmese capital Naypyidaw last week, Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) vice chair General N’Ban La met with President Thein Sein on September 9th, in what appears to be the first time the two men have met since the conflict began in June 2011. The veteran KIO leader was in Naypyidaw as part of a delegation of senior leaders from ethnic armed groups including the Shan State Progressive Party (SSPP), the Karen National Union the New Mon State Party (NMSP) and the Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP), groups. N'ban La was joined by Dr La Ja, the KIO's general secretary.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

KIO gives 100 million Kyat for Burma's Chin State flood relief

KIO Chairman Zawng Hra
The Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) donated 100 million (aprox US $90,000) Kyat to assist with flood relief in Chin State last week. The donation was made by the KIO to the Chin National Front (CNF) which will use the funds to distribute relief in flood affected areas in Chin state. The CNF leadership has publicly thanked the KIO for its generosity.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Kachin MMA fighter's Burmese debut denied due to visa trouble

Aung La N Sang
Aung La N Sang, the US based Kachin mix martial arts (MMA) fighter says he was unable to take part in the “Kingdom of Warriors” MMA event held in Rangoon earlier this month because of visa issues. In an interview with a MMA focused website, MMA Latest, Aung La N Sang explained that Burmese embassy officials in Singapore denied his request to come home.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

KIO vice chairman says army's Putao offensive not helping peace process

General N'ban La Awng, Vice-Chairman of the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) met with the Burmese government's chief negotiator in the northern Thai city of Chiang Mai on Sunday for talks. N'ban La and his colleagues KIO Joint General Secretary Dr La Ja as well as the Chairman of the Karen National People's Party Abel Tweed took part in the informal discussion with the Burmese government's chief negotiator Aung Min relating to the National Ceasefire Agreement (NCA).

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Airstrikes, clashes in Kachin state's Putao district displace civilians

Airstrikes,clashes in Kachin state's Putao district displace civilians
More than 1,000 Kachin civilians have been forced to flee their homes since the Tatmadaw (Burma's armed forces) carried out airstrikes on positions held by the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) near the village of Mali Yang in northern Kachin state last Saturday July 11th.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

UK mining firm looking to explore in Burmese jade area expects permit delay

Aurasian Minerals Plc (AuM) a British mining firm that has applied for a mineral exploration permit in a jade mining area in Burma has told its shareholders that it expects the permitting process to take some time. This admission was disclosed in a statement to shareholders issued last month that was penned by the firm's Non-Executive Chairman, Bruce Kay. Kay's statement was published in Aurasian's Annual Report.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Tay Za's wife removed from US sanctions list, could billionaire be next?

Photo: Tay Za (right) billionaire mountain climbing enthusiast and arms dealer

The spouse of Burmese tycoon Tay Za has been removed from the US Burma sanctions list, according to a brief statement issued this week by the US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), an entity which administers sanctions on behalf of the US government.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Burma Army accused of killing 103 year old Kachin women in Kachin state

 A censored Photo of the dead body of 103 years old Da Shi Hka found near her village in Kachin state.(Credit Free Burma Rangers)

A 103 year old Kachin women from Mahtek village was shot and killed on March 21 along with her son by army troops operating in Kachin state's Mansi township according to a statement issued by the Free Burma Rangers (FBR), a Christian humanitarian organization that is well known for operating in difficult to reach places in Burma's conflict areas.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Kachin state legislature tosses out question on stalled Myitsone dam

Myitsone, also locally Mali-N'Mai Zup at Irrawaddy River concluence , 27 miles norther of kachin state's capital Myitkyina, Northern Burma.aption
During a recent sitting of the state’s legislature, officially known as the Kachin State Hluttaw, officials from the Kachin state government refused to provide any details about the status of the stalled Myitsone dam and other large scale hydro projects set to be built in Burma’s most northern state.

Monday, April 6, 2015

British firm applies to search for minerals in Burmese jade areas

The British mining firm Aurasian Minerals Plc (AuM) announced in an update to shareholders in January that this past December it had delivered "three applications for mineral exploration licenses to the Myanmar Mining Authorities." Though the firm did not say where in Burma these applications were made it did reveal that the applications were made in areas that according to the company there exists "jade and gem mining concessions". 

Monday, March 30, 2015

UNFC decries recent wave of fighting

In a statement released over the weekend the United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC), an alliance of Burma's armed ethnic groups, expressed the group's concern regarding the recent wave of fighting that has taken place in Shan and Kachin states.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Burma army uses air strikes on KIO days after historic Naypyidaw meeting

KIO vice Chief of Staff Maj-Gen Gun Maw (left), General Secretary Dr. La Ja (middle) and Sumlut Gam, head of KIO peace delegation team, met Kachin community in Rangoon on Mar 22, 2015

On Sunday morning just days after an unprecedented meeting in Naypyidaw last week between senior representatives of the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) and President Thein Sein as well as the head of the armed forces Min Aung Hlaing, the Burma army launched repeated attacks on KIO positions.

Monday, March 16, 2015

700 Kachin civilians flee from home after clashes in Shan state last month

Clashes between the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and the Burma army in northern Shan State Mongkoe township last month forced more than 700 Kachin civilians to flee from their village to the Chinese border, according to a local pastor involved in the relief efforts.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Civilians destroy poppy fields in Kachin State's Hukaung valley

A poppy field in Hukaung valley, western Kachin state, northern Burma

Motivated by the ongoing drug crisis affecting Kachin state a group of concerned Kachin say they have destroyed hundreds of acres of poppy crops in the state's Hugawng valley (also Hukaung valley). The eradication campaign began on February 12th and ran until March 2nd. Poppy fields across Danai township were targeted for destruction. Poppies in Tawang, Tarung and Gangdau Yang destroyed by a group of more than 500 volunteers who came from across Kachin state, according to La Ring, an anti-drug campaigner who took part.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Burma's Armed groups and government to meet again soon

Representatives from the Burmese government's Union Peace-making Working Committee (UPWC) and their counterparts from the Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (NCCT) will hold a seventh round of peace negotiations later this month.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Tensions between KIO and government high after army shelling

Lah Nan (right), KIO's spokesperson

The situation in Kachin state remains tense after a recent round of shelling directed at the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO)'s armed wing last week by army units stationed in the area. The army fired shells towards KIO positions more than 30 times on February 11th and 12th. The shells were fired from army posts located at Hka Ya Bum, Bum Re Bum and Hpun Pyen Bum near Laiza. According to the KIO's chief spokesperson Lah Nan the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) did not respond to the military's deliberate provocation.

KBC urges churches worldwide to pray for murdered teachers

Rev. Dr. Samson, General Secretary of Kachin Baptist Convention

The Kachin Baptist Convention (KBC) has issued a call for churches worldwide to hold fasting and prayer sessions in order to bring justice in the case of the two Kachin volunteer teachers who were found raped and murdered last month in northern Shan state. The two teachers were volunteering with a KBC education program. The KBC has called for a global day of prayer to take place on February 19th.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

US church group urges justice for slain Kachin teachers

Rev. Gyung Hkawng (left), Kachin Baptist Convention (ABC) President and Rev. Dr. Roy Medley, General Secretary of American Baptist Church

During a visit to the Kachin state capital Myitkyina last week a delegation from the American Baptist Churches (ABC) organization called for Burmese government authorities to properly investigate the rape and murder last month of two Kachin teachers who were volunteering in Shan state.

Friday, February 13, 2015

88 generation deliver aid to Kachin war refugees

Min Ko Naing and 88 generation student leader met Lt-Col Zau Doi in Ginsi, Hpakant jade mine, Kachin state, northern Burma

The 88 Generation Peace and Open Society delivered a donation of food and essential products to over 1,000 Kachin war refugees sheltering in Ginsi Village-Tract, Hpakant Township, Kachin State on 6th February according to 88 Generation leader Ko Mya Aye.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Kachin group opposes Aung San statue for Myitkyina

Aung San statue

The Kachin National Consultative Assembly (KNCA) also known as WMR has come out against the building of a statue in the Kachin state capital Myitkyina of the slain Burmese Independence hero general Aung San for the commemoration of the 100th anniversary of his birth. The group sent an official letter to the Kachin state Chief Minister detailing their opposition to the project, says Duwa Lahtaw Hkun Seng, chairman of WMR.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Villagers in Shan state say army killed and burned abducted Kachin

The bodies of burned abducted Kachin villagers were buried on Law Hkum Bum hill on Feb 1, Northern Shan state

Villagers in northern Shan allege that four charred corpses found last week in a forested area belong to local villagers who were abducted and then killed by Burma army troops stationed in the area.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Kachin in India demand justice for two murdered school teachers

Jan 30, Kachin in Indian capital New Delhi protest against rape and murder of two Kachin teachers on Jan 20 by Burmese government soldiers

Members of the exiled Kachin community and their Burmese friends living in the Indian capital New Delhi held a protest last week to demand justice in the case of the two Kachin teachers who were found raped and murdered in northern Shan state on January 20th.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

KIA loses Shan post following Burma army attack

A Burmese army tank takes position in outskirt of Myitkyina, the capital of Kachin state, northern Burma

The Kachin Independence Army (KIA) was forced to abandon a front line post in Shan state following a heavy offensive by government forces on January 25th, according to KIA officials.

Burma army killing of Kachin teachers a war crime says ethnic armed alliance

Khun Okker, general secretary-1 of UNFC, the 12-ethnic armed alliance of Burma

Burma's largest armed ethnic alliance, the United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) criticized the government for its handling of an investigation into the rape and murder of two Kachin volunteer school teachers in northern Shan State. According to the UNFC, the act which many believe was carried out by Burma army personnel, was a war crime. The strongly worded statement released this week also called on the government to stop such war crimes from being carried out in future.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Burma army sends reinforcements to Kachin state's Hpakant

The KIA-constructed Uru Hka River bridge in Hpakant, the Kachin jade-rich town in northern Burma
A large number of Burma army troop reinforcements arrived in Kachin state's jade rich Hpakant township over the past week, the Kachinnews has learned, this following the heavy fighting that took place there last week between government forces and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA).

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Slain Kachin teachers deserve justice says 88' student leader

Mya Aye

Former political prisoner and famous '88 generation Student Leader Mya Aye says that there must be justice for the two slain teachers who were raped and killed in northern Shan state earlier this month. The alleged perpetrators are believed to be Burmese soldiers stationed in the area. The case has drawn widespread attention across Burma and around the world.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Clashes between KIO and Burma army continue after police released

Clashes between the Kachin Independence Organization's (KIO) armed wing and the Burmese military continued in Kachin state this week, even after the KIO handed over three police officers who had been detained near Hpakant.

National Ceasefire unlikely by UNION Day, say NCCT reps

Representative members of the Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (NCCT), a group that includes most of Burma's armed rebel groups, say that is very unlikely that a nationwide ceasefire agreement could be reach by Union Day on February 12th

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Alleged army rape and murder of 2 Kachin teachers fuels anger

Outraged villagers gather in northern Shan state in response to the alleged rape and murder of 2 Kachin teachers by the army.  (Photo courtesy anonymous)

Extremely graphic photos of the bloodied and naked bodies of two Kachin volunteer teachers, who were allegedly raped and murdered by the army in northern Shan state, have circulated widely among the Kachin community over the past 24 hours.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Burma army blocks access to trapped villagers in Kachin state's Hpakant

Burma army's LID 66 soldiers (left) and KIA battalion 6 soldiers in Hpakant, western Kachin state, northern Burma

Burma army forces blocked a delegation of church leaders and prominent businessmen from visiting villagers trapped by the fighting in Kachin state's jade rich Hpakant district, a member of the delegation tells the Kachinnews. Lamai Gum Ja, a member of the Peace-talk Creation Group (PCG), a committee comprised of prominent Kachin businessmen who are assisting the peace process told Kachinnews that his group wanted to meet the villagers as they are worried about the villagers well being.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Fighting resumes between KIO and Burma Army in Kachin and Shan states

Burma Army's LID 66 soldiers take position near KIA Awng Ba Lay post in Hpakant jade mine, western Kachin state of Burma
Troops from the Kachin Independence Organization's (KIO) armed wing have clashed repeatedly with government forces in both Kachin and northern Shan states over last few days. The clashes come ahead of a renewed push by President Thein Sein to secure a National Ceasefire agreement by the February 12th Union Day holiday.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Refugee children face severe health problems from cold

Children are facing severe health problems due to the extreme cold at Hpre refugee camp in the area controlled by the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) according to Salang Kaba Doi Pyi Sa, head of KIO’s IDP and Refugee Relief Committee (IRRC).

Monday, January 12, 2015

Kachin Manau festival goes on despite boycott

Government-controlled Kachin Manau festival marking 67th anniversary of Kachin state day on Jan 10
The Kachin State government held a traditional Kachin Manau festival this past week on the 67th annual Kachin state day. The Manau which involves ceremonial dance leaders guiding participants in complicated pattern around the traditional Manau polls, went ahead as planned despite the fact that many Kachin made clear their intention to boycott due to the government's handling of the ongoing Kachin conflict.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Kachin culture group boycotts Manau festival in Myitkyina

Jan 10, 2015 67th anniversary of Kachin State Day

The Kachin Culture and Literature Committee declined an invitation from government authorities to participate in the 67th Kachin State Day Manau dance festival, senior committee member Yaw Sam tells the Kachinnews. The government had asked that the group provide 100 persons representing the various Kachin sub-group to attend in their respective traditional dress.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Citing security concerns KIO delays New Year celebrations

 Lanyaw Zawng Hra, KIO Chairman

The Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) held a New Year's prayer service at the group's Laiza headquarters on January 3rd. The usual Christmas and New Year events planned for the KIO area were delayed due to security concerns stemming from the recent increase in tensions with the army.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Fire destroys more than 100 homes in Kachin refugee camp

 Shing Chyai Kachin IDP camp was destroyed by fire on Dec. 29, 2014. Photo: Kachin Baptist Convention (KBC)

A massive fire destroyed over 100 houses and supplies of food aid at the Shing Chyai Kachin Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp in eastern Kachin state's Sadung township on December 29th. The camp located in Raw Bum division was home to about 180 refugees families displaced by the ongoing conflict in Kachin state. The camp is based in government controlled territory very near to an area controlled by the Kachin Independence Organisation (KIO).